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Is Virginia Beach Fun? Check Out What We Found!

By: Swena Kalra

Edited By: Scott Sidders

Updated on November 5, 2023

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From the moment you arrive in Virginia Beach, you can feel the excitement in the air. The boardwalk is bustling with activity, and the sandy beaches are dotted with sunbathers. There's something for everyone in Virginia Beach, whether you're looking for a thrilling adventure or a relaxing day by the water. From surfing and parasailing to simply taking a stroll along the beach, there's no shortage of fun to be had. And when the sun goes down, the party is just getting started. With live music and a vibrant nightlife scene, Virginia Beach knows how to keep the good times going.

Top 10 Attractions & Things To Do in Virginia Beach

When it comes to things to do in Virginia Beach, the options are seemingly endless. But with so many activities, it can be tough to narrow down your options. To help you make the most of your trip, we've put together a list of the top 10 attractions and things to do in Virginia Beach.

1. Relax on the Beach

Aerial view of the Oceanfront at Virginia Beach, Virginia

The most obvious activity on our list is also the most popular. With over 25 miles of coastline, Virginia Beach is home to some of the best beaches on the East Coast. Soak up the sun, build a sandcastle, or simply take a stroll along the shore. No matter how you spend your time, a day at the beach is sure to be a highlight of your trip.

2. Visit the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center

Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center

Virginia Aquarium is a great place to have fun and learn about marine life. It features displays of aquatic animals from Virginia and around the world. You can also see exhibits on the history of Virginia's waterways and how they've changed over time. Plus, there are outdoor areas with beautiful views of the creek.

With its massive glass walk-through Red Sea Tunnel, interactive dinosaur exhibits, and otter feeding stations, the Virginia Beach Aquarium is a must-see for animal lovers of all ages. And for those looking for a little extra excitement, the Adventure Park zip-lining course offers a thrilling bird's-eye view of the aquarium's lush forested area. Don't forget to add a boat trip to see dolphins and whales in their natural habitat - it's an experience you won't want to miss!

3. Explore the Cape Henry Lighthouse

Old brick Cape Henry Lighthouse and new Cape Henry Lighthouse

As a long-standing and iconic landmark on the Chesapeake Bay, the Cape Henry Lighthouse has been a popular destination for visitors since it was built in 1792. Featuring beautiful views of the coast, this National Historic Landmark is a must-see for anyone exploring the area.

However, because it's located on the grounds of the Fort Story military base, all visitors must submit to a security check before being allowed to enter. So plan accordingly and allow yourself plenty of time to explore this fascinating piece of history. You can't go to Virginia Beach without seeing the Cape Henry Lighthouse!

4. Stroll along the Virginia Beach Boardwalk

Boardwalk on a early morning at the Virginia Beach, Oceanfront

It's no secret that Virginia Beach is a popular summertime destination for its gorgeous beaches. The most sought-after stretch of sand runs north of the Virginia Beach Fishing Pier and in front of an array of hotels. You'll also find the iconic Neptune Statue here. Even though this area can get crowded during peak season, there's always enough room to enjoy the beach.

When you're at the beach, the last thing you want to do is be cramped up indoors. The Virginia Beach Boardwalk provides the perfect solution- a wide, paved walkway running along the oceanfront for three miles. You can take a leisurely stroll, go for an invigorating run, or just enjoy the ocean breeze and people-watch.

The boardwalk is also lined with hotels, restaurants, and shops, so you can grab a bite or do some light shopping in between sunbathing and swimming. And since the atmosphere is casual, you don't have to worry about getting all dressed up.

5. Explore the Adventure Park

The Adventure Park at the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center is a great place for an adrenaline rush. With ropes and platforms dangling from the trees, this ziplining obstacle course provides plenty of excitement and challenges. Swinging stairs and aerial walks test your skills while you're securely roped in, making for an unforgettable experience.

You can explore the park on your own, and there are helpful spotters around to help you out if needed. The scenery is beautiful, and it's perfect for families with older children. It can get hot during the day, but the park is still cool because of the big trees. You don't need to go to the aquarium to visit the Adventure Park, but if you do go to the aquarium, the park is included in your admission.

6. Rent a Kayak or Paddleboard

Virginia Beach, Virginia paddleboarders take to the water to cool off and enjoy the day at the beach

One of the best ways to explore Virginia Beach is from the water. Rent a kayak or paddleboard and enjoy the scenery as you paddle around. You can even go for a swim if you get too hot. There are many places to rent kayaks and paddleboards in Virginia Beach. You can rent them by the hour or by the day, and most places will give you a map of the area so you don't get lost.

There are also many guided kayak and paddleboard tours available if you want someone else to do the paddling for you. These tours are a great way to learn about the area and see things you wouldn't be able to see from the shore.

7. Go Fishing

Virginia Beach Fishing Pier

No trip to Virginia Beach would be complete without going fishing. The Chesapeake Bay is one of the best places in the country to fish, and there are many charter companies that can take you out on a boat. You can also fish from the Virginia Beach Fishing Pier, which is free to use.

Whether you're an experienced angler or just trying it for the first time, fishing is a great way to relax and enjoy the outdoors. And if you're lucky, you might even catch dinner!

8. Visit the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art

MOCA is a museum that features different exhibitions every month. These exhibitions can range from paintings and sculptures to photography and videos. The artworks in these exhibitions are created by both international and national artists, as well as local artists. No two experiences at MOCA are the same, as the exhibits vary in content.

In addition to exhibitions, MOCA also engages with the local community through educational classes and programs. Consequently, MOCA is not only a place to appreciate art, but also a place to learn more about it.

9. Explore Military Aviation Museum

If you're a fan of aviation or just want to see some really cool planes, then a visit to the Military Aviation Museum is a must. This museum is dedicated to military aircraft from all around the world, and you can see around 60 different planes from WWI and WWII.

Not only are they on display, but many of them are even flight-worthy. And if you're feeling adventurous, you can even take a short ride on one of the planes for an additional fee. This is a great place to learn about aviation history and see some amazing aircraft up close.

10. Check Out Back Bay Wildlife Refuge

The Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge is a great place to explore nature and see all sorts of different animals. The 9,000 acres of land offer a variety of landscapes, from beaches to freshwater marshes to forests. You can take a stroll down one of the many walking paths or go paddleboarding in the still waters.
If you're lucky, you might spot some of the many different kinds of birds that call the refuge home, as well as deer, bobcats, otters, and muskrats. The visitor center provides a beautiful view of the water and surrounding islands. You can also access False Cape State Park from the Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge.

Top 4 Day Trip Ideas from Virginia Beach

The Virginia Beach area has so much to offer that you could easily spend a week here and still not see everything. But if you're only in town for a few days, here are some of the best day trips to take from Virginia Beach.

1. Sunset Dolphin Kayak Tours

Dolphin watching at Virginia Beach

The sun sets over the Chesapeake Bay, casting a beautiful orange hue over the water. You're on a small-group dolphin tour by kayak, paddling along the coast in search of Atlantic bottlenose dolphins. As you paddle, you can see the Cape Henry Lighthouses and the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel in the distance. This 2-hour tour is perfect for all ages and skill levels, and all necessary equipment is included. You're sure to enjoy spotting dolphins in their natural habitat on this unforgettable kayak tour.


2. Wetland Zip Tour

This is an exhilarating way to see the wetlands! Enjoy stunning views while zipping along on this 90-minute tour. You'll soar through the air on lines up to 1200 feet long, 80 feet above the ground, and get a bird's-eye view of the unique forest ecosystem. All safety gear and equipment will be provided, so anyone can join in the fun. No ziplining experience is needed. The exciting course includes nine different zip lines. You'll also learn about the wetland forest of Virginia Beach while you zip along!

3. Charter a Fishing Boat

Boats docked at Rudee Inlet marina in Virginia Beach, Virginia

Virginia Beach is known for its excellent fishing, so chartering a boat is a great way to spend a day. You can choose from half-day or full-day charters, and all necessary equipment is included. Your captain will take you to the best spots for catching fish such as striped bass, bluefish, flounder, and more. This is a great activity for groups of friends or family members who want to relax and enjoy the beautiful Virginia Beach coastline. You don't need any prior fishing experience, and your captain will be there to help you every step of the way.

4. Visit a Winery

The Virginia Beach area is home to many excellent wineries. You can visit one (or more!) for a tour and wine tasting. Many of the wineries offer stunning views of the surrounding countryside, so you can relax and enjoy the scenery as you sip on some delicious wines. It's the perfect activity for a romantic day trip or a fun outing with friends. There are plenty of wineries to choose from, so you're sure to find one that suits your taste.

Top 3 Places To Stay in Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach Oceanfront

In Virginia Beach, you're spoiled for choice when it comes to finding the perfect place to stay. Whether you're looking for a luxurious hotel, a cozy bed, and breakfast, or a campsite by the water, you'll find it here.

1. Marriott Virginia Beach Oceanfront

This beachfront hotel along the Virginia Beach Boardwalk offers contemporary accommodations with balconies and ocean views. Guests can enjoy a variety of resort amenities such as upscale and casual restaurants, bars, pools, gyms, a spa, and access to the beach. Breakfast and parking are available. This hotel is the perfect place to stay if you're looking for a relaxing vacation by the ocean.

2. Schooner Inn

With a 2-minute walk to Grommet Island Park and 1.3 miles from the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center, this hotel is perfect for anyone looking to enjoy the waterfront view. The rooms offer bright and simple décor with free Wi-Fi, cable TV, minifridges, and coffeemakers. Some rooms also come with a kitchenette, living room, balcony, and bedside whirlpool tub. You can also enjoy the hotel's heated outdoor pool and patio, as well as beach gear rentals (umbrellas, chairs) and seasonal bike rentals. The hotel also offers coin-operated laundry facilities and free on-site parking.

3. The Atrium Resort

The Atrium Resort is the perfect place to stay if you're looking for a relaxing and family-friendly environment. This smoke-free resort is located in the heart of the Virginia Beach Oceanfront and offers two-room suites with kitchenettes. On-site amenities include an indoor pool, fitness center, and complimentary Wi-Fi. You can also enjoy daily activities, Harris Teeter grocery delivery, and on-site parking.

In Conclusion

Sunset view of Virginia Beach Fishing Pier

Virginia Beach is the perfect destination for a summer vacation. There are many activities to choose from, whether you're looking for a day of adventure or a relaxing day by the water. You'll be spoiled for choice when it comes to finding the perfect place to stay, with many hotels and resorts offering stunning views of the oceanfront. You're sure to have a memorable vacation in Virginia Beach. We wish you all the best on your adventures, have fun, and take care!

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